Prime Minister Andrus Ansip replied to the interpellation concerning employment (No 313), submitted by Members of the Riigikogu Marika Tuus, Lauri Laasi, Ain Seppik, Nelli Privalova, Tiit Kuusmik, Heimar Lenk, Jaak Aab, Valeri Korb, Vladimir Velman, Kadri Simson and Jüri Ratas on 1 September.
Ansip explained that, already in the previous year, the Government had implemented several additional measures for managing unemployment and increasing employment. In order to improve the provision of services to unemployed, on 30 April this year, the Labour Market Board was merged with the Unemployment Insurance Fund whose functions include, among other things, providing of active and passive labour market measures. In Ansip’s estimation, merging of the functions of the agencies had significantly improved the provision of services to unemployed. People who have lost their job can now obtain all the information necessary for job-seeking form one place. In the words of the Prime Minister, discussions with social partners had been organised by the Minister of Social Affairs in March in order to deliberate the preliminary ideas for reduction of the impacts of the economic crisis and for stabilisation of the labour market. The discussions had concluded with an agreement in fourteen issues for further action. The action plan for reducing unemployment and bringing the unemployed back to the labour market 2009-2010 was discussed at the Government sitting on 10 September. Ansip noted that active labour market measures are important but not the only measures to increase employment. It is important to contribute particularly to supporting entrepreneurship which in its turn will enhance creation of jobs and employment. “The state has the responsibility to continue to create the conditions for the development of enterprise but not to engage in enterprise itself. The state cannot directly secure a job for all people but it can support enterprises, thereby creating the conditions for promoting the economy, in particular in times of crisis,” explained the Prime Minister. In the current situation of economic downturn, one cause of which is a significant reduction of export opportunities, the Government has launched several initiatives to support enterprises and develop enterprise. For example, a support package for supporting exporting enterprises with a total volume of 6.1 billion kroons has been prepared. In addition to the assistance to undertakings, an integrate package for supporting business start up by unemployed has been prepared in order to support creation of new jobs. It includes training and counselling of the applicant for the allowance, payment of an allowance in the amount of up to 70 000 kroons, follow-up advising of the enterprise established with the allowance and, if necessary, professional in-service training of the recipient of the allowance during two years after the creation of the enterprise.
The Prime Minister replied to three more interpellations: the interpellation concerning the alleged Euro-incompatibility of the IT system the pension insurance fund (No 314), submitted by Member of the Riigikogu Hannes Rumm on 1 September, the interpellation concerning the sale of the shares of Eesti Telekom Plc (No 319), submitted by Members of the Riigikogu Mai Treial, Villu Reiljan, Tarmo Mänd, Jaanus Marrandi and Ester Tuiksoo on 23 September, and the interpellation concerning the situation in the Estonian agriculture (No 323), submitted by Members of the Riigikogu Jaanus Marrandi, Kadri Simson, Kalev Kotkas, Eiki Nestor, Arvo Sarapuu and Karel Rüütli on 24 September.
The Minister of Internal Affairs Marko Pomerants replied to the interpellation concerning an alleged restriction of the freedom of voting (No 324), submitted by Members of the Riigikogu Olga Sõtnik, Eldar Efendijev, Nelli Privalova, Lauri Laasi, Lembit Kaljuvee, Valeri Korb and Vladimir Velman on 24 September.
The Minister of Justice Rein Lang replied to the interpellation concerning raising of the permitted degree of intoxication provided in the Traffic Act (No 317), submitted by Members of the Riigikogu Enn Eesmaa, Ain Seppik, Tiit Kuusmik, Toivo Tootsen, Nelli Privalova and Vladimir Velman on 17 September.
The Minister of Economic Affairs and Communications Juhan Parts replied to the interpellation concerning the maximum prices for heat (No 311), submitted by Members of the Riigikogu Helle Kalda, Evelyn Sepp, Jüri Ratas, Kadri Simson, Rein Ratas, Nelli Privalova and Olga Sõtnik on 1 September, and the interpellation concerning the alleged politisation of the agencies administered by the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications (No 318), submitted by Members of the Riigikogu Hannes Rumm, Kalvi Kõva, Sven Mikser and Heljo Pikhof on 17 September.
The Minister of Foreign Affairs Urmas Paet replied to the interpellation concerning the alleged employment of corrupt persons at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (No 322), submitted by Members of the Riigikogu Toivo Tootsen, Ain Seppik, Evelyn Sepp, Kalle Laanet, Kalev Kallo, Olga Sõtnik, Nelli Privalova, Helle Kalda, Valeri Korb, Lembit Kaljuvee, Marika Tuus, Heimar Lenk, Tiit Kuusmik and Arvo Sarapuu on 24 September, and the interpellation concerning the problems of border crossing in South-East Estonia and Ida-Virumaa (No 328), submitted by Members of the Riigikogu Inara Luigas, Toivo Tootsen, Valeri Korb, Eldar Efendijev and Georg Pelisaar on 1 October.
The Minister of Justice Rein Lang did not have to reply to the interpellation concerning the work of the Expert Committee of the Government of the Republic (No 305), submitted by Members of the Riigikogu Evelyn Sepp, Toivo Tootsen and Tiit Kuusmik on 18 June because the initiators withdrew it.
The Riigikogu Press Service